Calvin University sets school record for annual fundraising

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Calvin University raised $64.3 million in gifts and pledges from more than 18,800 alumni, parents, friends, faculty, staff and students throughout fiscal year 2020. Courtesy Calvin

Calvin University had a record-breaking fundraising year, raising $64.3 million in gifts and pledges from more than 18,800 alumni, parents, friends, faculty, staff and students throughout the 2020 fiscal year (July 1, 2019-June 30, 2020).

“Our supporters are extremely invested in the mission and vision of Calvin University,” said Ken Erffmeyer, vice president for advancement. “I’m deeply grateful for their support and for the impact they are having on our students, our faculty and the future of the institution. Our team has worked hard to honor their philanthropic spirit by matching people’s passions with both the immediate and forthcoming needs of the school.”

Some of the 2020 gifts included $22.25 million donated for a new School of Business, $11 million donated for faculty development and more than $5 million for donor-funded scholarships.

In 2019-20, 1,120 students received support through a donor-funded scholarship and, each year, 20 to 30 new awards are added.

“A named scholarship can be the difference-maker for a student,” said Jodi Cole, director of development. “Not only do donors support our students financially, but many provide encouragement to students throughout the year with letters, emails, care packages, Sunday dinners and mentoring.”

The Calvin Annual Fund — which supports anything from arts and athletics to financial aid, faculty research and student life — garnered over $3.6 million in donations this year after the completion of a five-day Calvin Cares campaign in June that saw 1,152 individuals donating $119,554.

“The Calvin community came together to ensure we can continue to offer an unparalleled Christ-centered education,” Erffmeyer said. “Unforeseen expenses and lost revenue from the pandemic have impacted Calvin’s budget, but people didn’t hesitate to respond, and we’re so thankful that our donors continue to help meet the evolving needs on campus. We’re excited and expectant as we look to the future.”

The top five fundraising years:

  • 2020 – $64,351,616
  • 2008 – $40,445,157
  • 2014 – $35,789,295
  • 2007 – $35,267,156
  • 1999 – $30,359,545

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